The excitement finally broke through your sleep and you’re awake! Unfortunately, it’s still dark outside and the rule is that the sun has to be up before you can wake up your parents, so it’ll be a while you can go downstairs to see what Santa brought.
For now, you and your sister will have to sit at the top of the stairs and look at the bulging stockings from a distance. Maybe you can go to the bottom of the stairs for a moment and try to look across the room to see the new gifts on the hearth, but it’s technically not allowed.
The two of you will try not to chatter too excitedly because you’re not supposed to wake up your folks, but surely they will be eager to see what Santa brought them, too.
After hours and hours it’s finally dawn, but you’ll still have to wait a little longer because your mother needs coffee.
When you get a little older, you’ll get a special pass to run down to the kitchen (don’t look too hard at the presents!) and make the coffee. Just dump out yesterday’s grounds from the percolator basket, rinse, rinse, rinse, fill the pot with water, balance the stem, line up the basket, and count one scoop of grounds from the five-pound Butternut can for every two cups of coffee.
Mother likes her coffee with two spoons of sugar and two spoons of Coffee-Mate. Maybe a little more Coffee-Mate if it looks too dark. Daddy likes his just plain. When you eventually begin drinking coffee, you’ll start out fixing yours like Mother’s but eventually end up liking black coffee best.
Now everyone can go to the living room to open their stocking presents and see what special gift Santa brought this year. Remember the time it was a Malibu Barbie? That was the best!
The gifts in the stockings and on the hearth are definitely from Santa because they’re wrapped in completely different paper than the presents your parents put under the tree.
You and your sister have fancy felt stockings, but your parents just put up their own regular socks. Your father’s black trouser sock looks especially funny with lumpy gifts stretching it out.
There’s a rule for opening regular gifts: you have to take turns so everyone can see what each person got. This rule doesn’t apply for the gifts in the stockings, though, so opening those is a free-for-all. Your parents get really boring stocking stuffers like cartons of cigarettes and sets of screwdrivers, but Santa always knows what you like.
Okay, now throw all your wrapping paper in the trash and put your presents in your room. We’re leaving for Grandma and Grandpa’s house in an hour, and you need to brush your teeth and get dressed while Daddy loads the car!